Searching For Jobs in Miami-Dade FL
Employment, much like everything in Miami, is not like it is anywhere else in the country. Provided you speak Spanish.
From the Miami Relocation Guide.
Upon your arrival in South Florida, it will be of utter importance that you find employment as quickly as possible. While in many cities this is a daunting task, even to the most qualified people, Miami has a unique set of obstacles to searching for and finding employment that you must consider. You see, employment, much like everything in Miami, is not like it is anywhere else in the country. While some may compare us to Las Vegas in our over-abundance of service industry jobs, or to LA with our over abundance of aspiring-somethings working in said service industry, Miami actually has a bustling business community with jobs that have little to do with trafficking cocaine, corrupting government officials or murder.
The cocaine boom of the 1980’s brought us countless banks and finance jobs. Construction is going up everywhere and Miami is also home to various cruise lines, Spainsh television networks and marketing firms. And in a city known for old people and excessive partying, there will always be endless jobs in health care. No matter what your industry, Miami has a job for you. Provided you speak Spanish.
This is not to say that non-Spanish speakers can’t get jobs, quite the contrary. It is just to say that your chances are exponentially higher of landing the job you want if you can converse with all of the clients and customers you deal with. And this means being fully bilingual. Miami is the capital of Latin America and most companies who do large amounts of business here cater to that particular market. So you’d better brush up on your Espanol if you haven’t already or you may be searching for longer than you had anticipated. Or end up taking a job in our ever-present service industry. And even there you would be well served to take some night classes at Miami-Dade.
YOU ARE NEVER TOO GOOD TO BE A WAITER
As I said before, when you first move here to South Florida you should find some sort of employment as soon as possible. Because this town will suck money from your wallet faster than anywhere not called “New York.” The one advantage we have over a lot of cities is a vast amount of temporary employment in this field especially during tourist season. There is no shame in doing this as turnover in the industry is immensely high and it frees up time for you to go out and look for your “real job.” Finding a position in a restaurant is as easy as walking up and down Lincoln Road filling out applications at the 750 restaurants it features, or cruising Ocean Drive applying at roughly 200 more. If you are not hired on the spot, don’t bother going back. They will never remember who you are or why you are there. Just keep on going until somebody hires you on.
After you have secured a temporary position that will at least pay half your FPL bill for the month, it is time to look for a job in your chosen field. If your Spanish is severely lacking and you are not dead set on working in Miami, I would highly suggest looking for employment north of the County Line in Broward County (Ft. Lauderdale). Not only are companies there less absorbed by Latin American clientele, your chances of being interviewed by a more favorable interviewer are much, much higher. You can still live in North Dade in cities like Aventura or Sunny Isles and your commute will be no worse than it would be if you worked in Doral or Downtown.
SO YOU’RE NOT SPENDING MORE TIME IN YOUR CAR THAN YOU ARE AT WORK
The first thing to look at when applying for a job is its location. If you have secured an apartment already and did not read my previous “Guide to Where to Live” you have no doubt found somewhere in the Northwest or Southwest triple digits thus ensuring an unbearable commute should you work anywhere other than these areas. The one thing you never want to do is work east and live west. Or live south of downtown and work downtown or north. Or live in North Dade or Broward and work downtown. These are the traffic patterns that will drive you insane and force you to leave the city. I suggest you find a job first and then move to minimize you commute. Otherwise the location of your job should be a major factor when considering whether or not to take said position. (see: map)
Like most cities, we have a great many resources to help you find work. There are the obvious like Monster.com and CareerBuilder. There are also the classic standbys The Miami Herald classifieds and New Times for those who are less computer-savvy (see: All of Dade County). If you are in the healthcare field, the Baptist network of hospitals have extensive job listings at each of their locations, and many large companies based here list openings on their websites. Much of this depends on the industry in which you work, but if you know there is a large company in that particular industry (for instance Univision if you work in TV) check their website for jobs.
You will, again, notice that a large percentage of ads say “Bilingual preferred,” which means “Bilingual Required unless you are related to the owner.” In which case English becomes optional. Do not be discouraged if your Spanish is not terrific, however. You can be hired in this city without speaking two languages. Just ask anyone at Publix. You may want to be cognizant of this fact when you begin to send out resumes. Anything you have done that involves Spanish or Latin America should be included near the top. So if you took one semester of Spanish in High School, be damn sure to include in in your resume. Worked with Spanish-speaking warehouse workers in your first job? “Conquered several complex language barriers while interacting with crucial personnel in a busy shipping/receiving facility.” Built latrines in El Salvador the summer after you sophomore year? “Helped to further develop the lives of Latin American people.” Got in a fight with the deli guy when he didn’t understand how to say 3/8 of a pound in English? “Constantly striving to improve business relations with Latin America.” Whatever you can do to make yourself look more Latinized is going to put you way ahead of all the other overeducated Americans looking for work in paradise.
So while you may be frustrated and not know where to begin looking for work when you get to Miami, do not be overwhelmed. Make sure you secure some sort of temporary employment that allows you to look for “real” jobs during the day so you can afford what will assuredly be a triple-digit power bill. Then make sure your Spanish is solid and start searching the newspaper, the internet and the post boards at many local companies. It may take a while, but once you get the hang of it you’ll be getting calls for interviews in no time. Just don’t be surprised if the people calling talk to you in Spanish.
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